Qatar

  • GCC Dispute Pushes Iran and Qatar Closer but With Caveats

    Despite the recent rise in tensions between the United States and Iran, Qatar is moving closer to its controversial neighbor as a blockade of Qatar by prominent Arab countries appears to have become a permanent feature of the regional geopolitical landscape.

    It has now been two years since Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, and Egypt, collectively known as the Anti-Terror Quartet (ATQ), cut all diplomatic ties with the State of Qatar, and imposed an air, land, and sea blockade on the gas-rich emirate. The four states accused Doha of supporting terrorism, maintaining excessively close relations with Iran, and interfering in neighboring states’ domestic affairs. 

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  • Bell Quoted in Axios on Qatar Ditching OPEC


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  • Qatar's Withdrawal Signals 'a Weakening of OPEC'

    Qatar’s withdrawal from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will “signal a weakening of OPEC at a time when it is in some ways less powerful than it used to be, but also more crucial in balancing the market because US production is so strong,” Randolph Bell, director of the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center said. 

    Announcing Qatar’s decision to leave the oil producers’ group on December 3, the country’s energy minister said the withdrawal was motivated by a “desire to focus... on plans to develop and increase its natural gas production.”

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  • The Gulf's Soccer Showdown

    The World Cup’s knockout rounds are in full swing, and followers of Middle East soccer will now have to root for teams outside the region. Despite some compelling narratives – the dramatic politicization of Egyptian star Mo Salah, Iran’s rags-to-riches goalkeeper saving a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman shrugging off his team’s loss to Russia with Vladimir Putin – most Middle Eastern sides rather ignominiously crashed out of the tournament in the group stages.

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  • Bridging the Gulf in the GCC

    Relations between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states have been fractured for much of the past year. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, and Egypt cut diplomatic ties with Qatar in June 2017 citing reports that Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani had made remarks of the United States while offering support for Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, and Iran, and claiming Doha’s policies fueled regional terrorism and extremism.

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  • Did Saudi Crown Prince Just Endanger His Reform Agenda?

    Anti-corruption crackdown targets princes, wealthy businessmen

    Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has unleashed an unprecedented crackdown on corruption that has, so far, resulted in the detention of more than two hundred people, including almost a dozen princes.

    The most significant targets are former crown prince, Mohammed bin Nayef, whose assets have been frozen; Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, one of the world’s richest men and a...

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  • The Gulf Crisis Threatens Tunisia’s Stability

    Qatar is one of Tunisia’s most important trade partners. It has invested, loaned, or assisted Tunisia with more than 1.5 billion USD since 2011, and has directed its media, think-tanks, and PR empire to acclaim the country’s transition to democracy. Thousands of Tunisians work in Qatar, and the current Gulf crisis has allowed a number of Tunisian businessmen to profit from the besieged peninsula by exporting industrial products, and even establishing factories there.

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  • ASEAN and the Qatar Crisis

    The months-old diplomatic crisis involving Qatar and the quartet—Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt, and Bahrain—has given Doha more reason to push for deeper energy, trade, and investment ties with dynamic economies of the Far East. To pursue these opportunities, last month Qatar’s Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani travelled to Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia, three countries which have not subscribed to the  Saudi/UAE-led bloc’s narrative of Qatar as a state sponsor of terrorism.

    Although this trip was planned prior to the ongoing Qatar crisis, Al Thani’s visit to these three Southeast Asian countries served to enhance efforts to make the Arabian emirate increasingly important to more countries around the world as part of a strategy to undermine Riyadh and Abu Dhabi’s ability to isolate Qatar.

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  • LeBaron Quoted in ThinkProgress on Gulf Crisis


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  • El Sirgany in CNN: Quartet Says Qatar Talks Possible But No Concessions


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